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Blogpaws 2016: A guide to Arizona

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[heading style=”1″ color=”#996633″ style_color=”#996633″]Be Aware of Wildlife [/heading]

The Wild Horse Pass Casino is on the reservation and the reservation has a lot of issues with wild dogs. These dogs are not evil nor particularly aggressive, they are hungry. Just be cautious when approaching or feeding them. The same goes with our coyotes.

If you’re lucky, you’ll see a few of them lurking around the high desert, but probably not. They are geniuses at taking cover and hiding out during the day.

Just be aware that when you’re walking your small dogs or cats in the evening or early morning, this is also when wildlife likes to do their hunting. Keep your pets on a leash and if you need some extra precautions, take along some canned air to scare them off.

[photo_gallery style=”4″ source=”media: images/Wildlife/coyote1.jpg,images/Wildlife/coyote2.jpg,images/Wildlife/coyote3.jpg”]

We’ll be in monsoon season in June, so be sure you keep an eye out for Bufo Toads.

These toads are highly toxic and while they (probably) won’t kill your dog, they will make them very ill. If your dog does happen to mouth one, you should immediately run water through your dog’s mouth. While it feels like you’re waterboarding your dog, this action will wash the toxins away and hopefully save your pet from a very bad reaction.

Bobcats are another fan favorite and they are making frequent appearances these days. If you have a small dog or cat, be sure you’re aware of hawks, owls, and other overhead issues.

[photo_gallery style=”4″ source=”media: images/Wildlife/bobcat1.jpg,images/Wildlife/bobcat2.jpg,images/Wildlife/bobcat4.jpg”]

 

[heading style=”1″ color=”#996633″ style_color=”#996633″]Insects[/heading]

Arizona is not nearly as filled with insects as some places, but the ones we have can inspire fear in even the biggest bug lover. Africanized bees, scorpions, and dangerous spiders are just a few of the things you might run across. This is why it’s a very good idea to keep your pets on leash.

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Insects to watch for: The Bark Scorpion, Spiders, especially the Brown Recluse and Black Widows. Mosquitoes, which carry all manner of blood-born diseases including West Nile Virus.

[photo_gallery style=”4″ source=”media: images/Insects/bee-610446_1280.jpg,images/Insects/mosquito-illustration_360x286.jpg,images/Insects/widow-i-q.jpg,images/Insects/scorpion.jpg,images/Insects/uv-lighting.jpg”] [heading style=”1″ color=”#996633″ style_color=”#996633″]Poisonous, Prickly Plants[/heading]

Arizona is filled with plants that are highly aggressive and very toxic. We like to joke that Arizona is An Environment Trying to Kill You. For example, you should always keep you and your pets at least 3 feet away from jumping cholla. It doesn’t really jump, but you’ll feel like it did.

“Jumping” Cholla Cactus

Cactus is everywhere and your pets will more than likely step on some at one time or another. Sadly, cactus gets tracked everywhere through the desert by wild animals (and people). This is another great reason to keep boots on your pets when you’re out wandering around.

[note style=”5″ type=”info” icon=”yes”]Tip: The easiest way to remove any spines is to use a fine-toothed comb to comb it off. You’ll probably need to use tweezers to pull out any stubborn thorns.[/note]

'Jumping' Cholla Cactus

The Sago Palm is very toxic to pets – don’t let your pets nibble this common plant. You’ll find them in any indoor area that looks attractive because it’s a slow-growing plant and is very attractive to look at.

Sago Palm Plant

Oleander and Bougainvillea are very beautiful (and rampant throughout the Southwest). They are also highly toxic. Don’t let your pets visit a plant for a snack.

 
Bougainvillea Flowers

 

Oleander

Okay, now that the cautions are out of the way (and I feel better), let’s get on to the fun things you can do in Arizona! 

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